A people who have suffered so much for so long at hands of a racist society must draw the line somewhere. . . . the black communities of America must rise up as one man to halt the progression of a trend that leads inevitably to their total destruction.
We were not talking about the average white person: we was talking about the corporate money rich and the racist jive politicians and the lackeys, as we used to call them, for the government who perpetuate all this exploitation and racism.
On the one hand, the guns were there to help capture the imagination of the people. But more important, since we knew that you couldn't observe the police without guns, we took our guns with us to let the police know that we have an equalizer.
The first point was we wanted power to determine our own destiny in our own black community. And what we had done is, we wanted to write a program that was straightforward to the people. We didn't want to give a long dissertation.